Archived posts from this Category

Demolition Suggestion: Royal Bank on Queen

Posted by on 29 Jun 2009 | Tagged as: Fredericton, landuse


This 1970s era blight occupies a prime corner lot yet it doesn’t make use of the corner at all. All that is on the corner is a blank brick wall. They must consider Fredericton pedestrians really ugly as they put the ground floor windows up high so they can’t see out. The doors to the bank are actually on Carleton St., away from the more major Queen St. It looks like there are doors on Queen, but they are only emergency exits. In fact, the sole purpose of that alcove is so that panhandlers can use it to jump out in front of you to aggressively ask for change.

Although there are also a lot of of other smaller buildings around it, this lot is fairly large and could be redeveloped into something much nicer as it goes quite far down Carleton:

Fredericton’s Train Station: Some Numbers

Posted by on 22 Jun 2009 | Tagged as: Fredericton, landuse

There’s a lot of debate about what to do with the train station. I’ve briefly mentioned it before in a post, but I’ve been curious about why nobody has already fixed it up on their own. To be honest, it doesn’t matter to me whether they tear it down or fix it up. I’m actually going to try to be objective here.

Unfortunately, nobody has actually measured the building. I had to use the ruler tool in Google Earth to make this estimate, which may end up being very wrong.  I am roughly guessing that there is 4000 square feet of usable space in the building.

For the moment, we’ll assume that there will be 4000 square feet of total rentable space.

A few years ago, I was told by a real estate agent that buildings cost $100/sqft to build new. I’m not sure that’s 100% accurate, but that’s the figure we’ll use for now.

So to build a building the same size as the train station, it would cost $400,000. The net rent on a building in the same area is about $8 per square foot per year. This means that it will take 12.5 years to recover the building cost. Operating expenses and taxes aren’t included in the net rent. Usually money has to be reinvested into the building for renovations after about 20 years as parts of it get worn out (like the roof).

The formula used to get the years to ROI is:
(cost to acquire / square feet / net rent)

So for a quick summary, we have:
(400,000 / 4000 / 8 ) = 12.5

Now, many sources tell us that the train station will cost up to $2 million to fix. So plugging it into the formula we get:
(2,000,000 / 4000 / 8 ) = 62.5
Yikes. 62.5 years is definitely not commercially viable at all.

Let’s just run another similar sized building through the formula. We’ll take the Electric Motor Service building as a comparison. On June 22nd 2009, the values given were: Cost: $495,000, sqft: 5881

So we’ll plug them into the formula:
(495,000 / 5881 / 8 ) = 10.5

Depending on the current state of the building, 10.5 years is pretty good.

So for the train station repair to be commercially viable, $1.5 million will have to come from somewhere. It will either be J.D. Irving (who refused to pay much less for the basic maintenance that was required for the station to not get into its current state) or taxpayers (who will not be happy at paying for something that J.D. Irving broke).

Demolition suggestion: 130 Carleton

Posted by on 15 Jun 2009 | Tagged as: Fredericton, landuse

This drab building features the second worst kind of siding available (corrugated aluminum, the worst would have to be vinyl). With no elevator access and a layout that doesn’t allow for an open plan, this building has little value.


This uninteresting box has a parking lot beside it that could be used for something much better. As it abuts the parking garage, integrated parking would be a possibility.

Demolition suggestion: Acadian Lines building

Posted by on 01 Jun 2009 | Tagged as: Fredericton, landuse

This large eyesore is mostly used for indoor parking. Sure, the bus terminal is functioning, but it’s an awful bus terminal. There’s no canopy to shelter you from the rain, no proper baggage handling system, bags are just left on the parking lot for anybody to pick up. Inside, the waiting area is spartan with uncomfortable plastic seating. The front of the building has been recently renovated and looks fairly nice, yet there are still remnants of when it was a gas station.


This building (and surrounding surface parking lots) easily take up over half a city block. This lot is larger than the Centennial Building’s lot so we can imagine something larger than the Centennial Building going in here.


Demolition suggestion: Home Hardware Lumberyard

Posted by on 25 May 2009 | Tagged as: Fredericton, landuse

I’ll admit that having a hardware store downtown is really nice, but do we really need a lumber yard? The land must be worth much more than their lumber business. Lumber yards don’t really need to be convenient to anything so they could probably move out of that site and still get the same amount of business.


Hmmm, just noticed that the Irving is also taking up a lot of space………

« Previous Page